Interview: Fiona Araee
Luca Curci talks with Fiona Araee during FRAGMENTED IDENTITIES, the second appointment of BORDERS ART FAIR 2021, at THE ROOM Contemporary Art Space.
I’m a Los Angeles based multi-cultural artist. My artworks takes a critical view of social, political and cultural issues and shows the contradiction between the inner and outer faces of human beings. It explores the varying relationship between tradition and fine art. Often referencing Persian history and typography and talisman signs. Each project often consists of multiple works, often in a range of different media, grouped around specific themes and meanings.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Fiona Araee – In my opinion art is to portray the reality of life with colors, free like a bird that breaks the wall of a cage to fly.
LC – What are you currently working on?
FA – Currently I am working on several paintings focused around the idea of Covid-19. Depicting living alongside death, fear, separation and anxiety. My paintings draw the idea of people struggling over their survival and getting close to the supernatural world.
LC – What is your creative process like?
FA – Anytime I start a new piece of art, a tree comes to my mind that needs to grow and come to fruition. I try to picture the ancient and rich culture that I grew up with and is in my whole being with the use of Talisman signs, Persians letters, numbers and patterns between faces contrast. Displaying the inside and outside contrast of humans confronting life is one of the main elements of my artworks.
LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
FA – My artworks use a postmodern and figurative theme alongside I enjoy representing the traditional and cultural symbols in which I grew up with using the faces and eyes portraying people themselves.
LC – What is the message linked to the artwork you have shown in this exhibition? How is it connected to the theme of the entire festival?
FA – The messages in my work are about the real image of who I really am inside. I grew up in Iran where I had to pretend to be someone else at times. There was boundary and prejudice for everything. When I emigrated, I was like a bird trapped in a cage or a tree with ancient roots. I lost my identity constantly and found my way in this world filled with colors and mind of imaginations.
LC – We were attracted by your last artistic production. Has the artwork presented been created for the festival or as a part of pre-existing works?
FA – These two paintings have been created during the covid pandemic. In a time when breathing, hugging, being with one another was banned. Showing the feeling of suffocation in a gray modern unreal and digital world.
LC – How is being an artist nowadays?
FA – We are in a time where technology advancements have made our world more binary. The artist must present the nostalgic traces of human beings in his work using ideas and visual creations to confront the audience with the real world.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID Group can represent an opportunity for artists?
FA – I think ITSLIQUID Group will cause works of different artists to be shown and be in connection with various people from different parts of our society.
LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID platform?
FA – I think that ITSLIQUID Group platform, with its different competitions provide an opportunity to grass root artists to present their art in big artistic platforms and social media as well.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
FA – It was my pleasure working with your group. It gave me the opportunity to present my work alongside the artists from different parts of the world with various thoughts. Your group provided a big advertisement for my paintings considering the professional connection that you have with museums and galleries all over the world.